Dear Sisters and brothers in Christ:
Jesus said in Matthew 28:20, "I am with you always, even to the end of the age." And the Lord God says in Isaiah 41:10 "..fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
Our leaders (Elders and Council) have determined that we should take the precautionary decision to suspend our Sunday worship services for the next few weeks (or until given the indication to resume to normalcy). Although I didn’t agree at the time, I understand and recognize that it is for the safety of all of our members and visitors. Also, our Synodical and District leaders have suggested that our churches suspend regular worship gatherings, and I gave my word that if that was the consensus, I would comply with that decision. I understand that we cannot predict what could possibly take place, but I truly believe that the Lord is merciful and that in and through His Word He guides, directs and protects His people through the power of His Holy Spirit; I also know that I cannot pretend to know all the underlying issues, facts, and actual or potential danger that this pandemic wields. Nevertheless, I still felt that if most of our members in relatively stable health, could meet, worship together, and lift up our people, our country and the world in prayer we would ask the Lord for His healing, protection and mercy as we would commend ourselves to the Lord, along with taking all the necessary precautions (i.e. no close physical contact, handwashing, etc.). I only asked that these leaders go before the Lord in prayer and respond to me as soon as they were able, and they did. The consensus, of course was to suspend our services until further notice. I have asked Brenda to share (via Email/Phone/Facebook) this important decision, since we will go forth with the decision of our leadership. Since we are not in the same situation as other churches in our District that have the capacity to stream their worship services via the internet, I will include a copy of my sermon prepared for Sunday March 22nd.
May the Lord continue to lift us up as we lift up His name and give Him the glory for His saving Gospel message!
In His service,